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Soccer pitch generates its own electricity – SportsUntapped.com
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Added February 9th, 2016 by Ian

Soccer pitch generates its own electricity
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The cost of electricity is soaring across the world, but that doesn’t concern soccer players in Lagos, Nigeria since their movement on the pitch can literally produce enough power to generate the floodlights. The population in the Lagos area is close to 17 million people and the city is having a hard time keeping up with their power demands. However, a British technology firm named Pavegen has stepped in to lend a helping hand. Incredibly, the company has built a football pitch which can create energy from the footsteps of the players.

The energy is converted into electricity and is combined with solar power to light up the playing area for night games. It’s also been reported that there’s a similar type of pitch being used in Brazil. Since Nigeria is considered to be a developing country, there’s now a high demand for electricity even though about 50 percent of the residents don’t have access to it. According to reports, close to 80 per cent of the population use diesel generators as a source of power, but the fuel is expensive and the machinery often breaks down.

Since Nigeria is one of the most soccer-mad nations in the world, Pavegen decided to try out its new technology in Lagos. If it proves to be successful it could lead to further projects and the way electricity is generated in the nation could be revolutionized. Laurence Kemball-Cook, the CEO of Pavegen said he’s looking forward to installing the company’s technology throughout Africa in the near future. Kemball-Cook admitted that there are limitations to the technology and it wouldn’t be able to act as a region’s sole source of energy, but it would certainly be a helping option.

Pavegen developed the fields after receiving a grant from the Royal Dutch Shell oil company to give them an opportunity to research and develop the pitches. The company wouldn’t share the price of its fields, but said costs have come down considerably. Pavegen basically produces small tiles which are installed under the pitch and can produce kinetic energy when players step on them. As the players run around they constantly step on the tiles and the energy is converted into electricity. The energy can also be stored for later use.

This is an ideal solution for soccer leagues to play night games without having to worry about the high cost of electricity. But of course, the cost of the power-generating tiles needs to be covered up front before they can be installed under the playing surface.

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